Sunday, September 18, 2011

MDI Marathon Course Refresher

Long run on tap today and I ran the last 21 or so miles of the MDI Marathon course to get reacquainted with the route. It was a most curious run. I had some stomach issues early on and never really felt in sync until the final big hills in the end, and despite the obstacles I still ended up with a faster than expected pace.

Kate very graciously dropped me off outside the Blackwoods Campground and would meet me over in Southwest Harbor several hours later. Lots to do on the island, so I knew she would have no trouble entertaining herself while I ran (she went for a hike and then got some tea and did some work).

I started along on Rt. 3 and a few miles later made the left turn on Cooksey Drive. A few hundred yards later, I spotted a mama deer and her teenage offspring on the road staring at me intently and I stopped and made eye contact with them. It's always pretty cool looking wildlife right in the eyes like that. Why not look at the legs or feet? It's always the eyes. Kinda eerie. She stamped a hoof showing her disapproval of me being there and I then continued to run, but slowly and pretty much right at them. The mom startled at first but was holding her ground. Fortunately, when I got within about 20 feet she and her offspring dashed into the woods.

About a mile after that the first wave of stomach trouble began and I ducked into the woods for a bio-break. I was hoping I would feel more in sync after that, and I did but only a little bit. I continued on to Seal Harbor and was still feeling pretty out of rhythm. My stride just seemed off and I also wasn't feeling very energetic, but at the same time not exactly sapped either.

Several miles later I was in Northeast Harbor, and I was beginning to feel the need for a biobreak again. I checked some of the businesses and parking lots as I ran by, hoping to see a porta pottie but to no avail. If it was a dire emergency, I could always ask a business to use their restroom, but I wasn't feeling bold and I wasn't in that desperate of a situation yet.

I was then through the downtown and now in the neighborhood section and the roads were repaved so the yellow course indicators weren't there and at one point I took a wrong turn. That turned out to be a blessing, as it led me to a school's athletic field where a very clean porta pottie was available. Ahhh.

After doing my business, I backtracked and got back on the course, feeling slightly better. Made my way up and around Somes Sound. About 14 miles into the run at the top of the fjord, Kate drove by and stopped. She had some water and I refilled my handheld and we made plans to meet up at the coffee shop in SW Harbor.

I then reached the often dreaded hills on the final section of the course. Oddly, things began to turn around for the better here. I felt way more in sync and the energy was decent as I climbed each section of hills. Made it to the highest point and enjoyed the mostly downhill section to the finish. Easily found Kate and I rehydrated with some lemonade to end the morning. Nice.

Glad to close the week with over 60 miles. One more week until the taper!

Ran 21.4 miles @ 7:55/mile pace.
Paved roads.
Extremely hilly.
Lower 50s to lower 60s, sunny.
Saucony Kinvara, shorts, long sleeved shirt (sleeves pushed up), cap, handheld bottle (water).


sn0m8n said...

Taper? Pfffttt...

Jamie said...

Scary things have been happening when I've been giving my legs a chance to rest lately. Be afraid. Be very afraid.

Jeremy Bonnett said...

Yeah, that's not a slow pace.

Sonriserunning said...

Great running Jamie! You've been training hard for a long time--inspiring! It's been awhile since I've checked your blog out,but it's always good reading. God Bless!